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Following WWDC Keynote, Apple Reveals iOS 8 Will Support Third-Party Keyboard Apps

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iOS 8 to support third-party keyboard

During Monday?s WWDC, Apple finally reveals that they have made drastic improvements to the iOS keyboard. The all-new iOS 8 will now be able to do predictive typing and support the installation of third-party keyboards apps, something that many Apple fans have been waiting, for years.

In a speech by Apple?s software chief Craig Federighi during the WWDC 2014, he said that the iOS 8 will bring system-wide support for third-party keyboards. In other words, popular Android keyboard apps like SwiftKey and Swype will now be able to carry their apps over to a whole new arena ? the iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch.

Aside from offering iOS 8?s third-party keyboard support, Apple has brought in significant enhancements to its own, native keyboard machine. They are calling this new technology as ?QuickType.? Federighi explained that QuickType ushers in new features to the iOS keyboard that will make typing on mobile devices quicker and more efficient. To sum it up, we thought that those keyboard features may be described in two major concepts.

First is the next-word prediction feature. In a way similar to most Android keyboards, three word suggestions will be shown just above the iOS keyboard once the user types in a new word or even just a few letters.?If the user types in letters such as ?hone?? the system may suggest words like ?honest? or ?honey? and the user can just click on those suggestions.

Apple's iOS 8 QuickType keyboard functionality

Apple’s iOS 8 QuickType keyboard functionality

QuickType will also provide person or app-specific next-word suggestions. This is unknown in previous versions of the iOS. In this case, word suggestions will differ depending on the app in which you are typing in. It also applies to a particular person or contact you are sending messages to. According to Federighi, this predictive word functionality will be done or stored locally, rather than via the cloud, to better protect users? privacy.

Even more innovative is Apple?s move for iOS 8 to support third-party keyboard applications to allow people to use other apps other than the native iOS version. Android users have been enjoying this technology for years and even BlackBerry 10, the latest OS from the Canadian device company, has included predictive keyboard software in its OS. Apple is clearly determined to catch up with the keyboard trend.


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